1. A study in panic : The coronavirus outbreak could kneecap the tourism and export sectors, though lessons learned from the Sars epidemic may lessen the blow. The novel coronavirus outbreak in China and other parts of the world has struck fear among the masses, with a global health emergency declared by the World Health Organization (WHO). Bangkok Post
  2. BoT expects weaker economy in Q1 : Coronavirus dangers and budget delays cast doubt on growth prospects. The spread of the new coronavirus strain and the delay in the fiscal 2020 budget bill will dampen the economy, which will grow at a softer pace than expected in the first quarter and the full year, adding to the likelihood of a policy rate cut at next week’s meeting, says a key central bank official. Bangkok Post
  3. Final decision on tap for non-alcoholic beer tariff : A decision on the tariff rate for non-alcoholic beer is expected this month, says the Excise Department. The Finance Ministry has asked the department to reconsider the rate to be slapped on alcohol-free beer because the details turned in for consideration were incomplete, said director-general Patchara Anuntasilpa. Bangkok Post
  4. Opposition submits motion, Prawit added to target list : The opposition submitted a censure debate motion yesterday to Parliament president Chuan Leekpai, in which Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha and five other ministers will be targeted. Bangkok Post
  5. Contention for 5G spectra kicks off : AIS, TUC, DTAC, TOT and CAT submit bids. The battle for 5G spectrum is starting out fierce, with leading mobile operator Advanced Info Service (AIS) and True Move H Universal Communication (TUC) said to be vying for three out of four spectrum ranges in the 5G licence auction scheduled for Feb 16. Bangkok Post
  6. Ministry wields money in crisis : The Tourism and Sports Ministry plans to roll out a marketing and development plan next week after the cabinet approved a 500-million-baht budget yesterday to offset slumping tourism numbers linked to the spread of the coronavirus. Bangkok Post
  7. Sam Mitr bids to protect seats : Lunch seen as ‘show of force’ to coalition. The latest gathering of the Sam Mitr (Three Allies) group – a key faction within the ruling Palang Pracharath Party (PPRP) – is seen as a show of force intended to warn against any attempts to cut its cabinet seat quota in the reshuffle expected after the no-confidence debate scheduled for this month. Bangkok Post
  8. FFP’s fate decided in 2 weeks : The Constitutional Court says it will rule on whether to dissolve the Future Forward Party (FFP) on Feb 21 over allegations that it accepted a 191.2-millionbaht loan from its leader Thanathorn Juangroongruangkit, a violation of the organic law on political parties. Bangkok Post
  9. BoT cuts policy rate to record-low 1% : KBank out in front with MRR reduction. The Bank of Thailand yesterday cut its policy rate by 25 basis points to an unprecedented 1% to curb the impact of the novel coronavirus outbreak, the delayed fiscal budget and severe drought conditions. Bangkok Post
  10. Uttama says state retains fiscal tools : Officials can borrow, minister tells forum. The Finance Ministry is gearing up to borrow from domestic funding sources to finance state investment projects while enactment of the annual budget bill for fiscal 2020 remains delayed, says Finance Minister Uttama Savanayana. Bangkok Post

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